Dog lost leg after Hartlepool woman failed to take pet to vet following injury

A woman whose dog lost a leg after she failed to take her pet to a vet when it suffered a broken leg has been banned from keeping animals for 10 years.

Friday, 12th July 2019, 16:31 pm
Updated Friday, 12th July 2019, 17:06 pm
Lola is recovering well despite having her right hind leg amputated.

Michaela Alison Durkin’s whippet cross Lola had to have her right hind leg amputated after she went four weeks without attention.

Durkin, 23, pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal between March 8 and April 5 this year.

Lola could not put any weight on her injured leg when she was rescued by the RSPCA.

Teesside Magistrates Court heard that Lola’s leg could have been saved if Durkin had sought treatment when the injury happened.

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Lola was rescued from Durkin’s home in Jesmond Gardens, Hartlepool, by the RSPCA following an anonymous call from a concerned member of the public.

Inspector Clare Wilson found the seven-month-old dog could not bear to put any weight on her right hind leg.

It was found she had a fractured femur and tightening and shortening of muscles causing her to go lame.

Neil Taylor, prosecuting, said the need for a vet would have been “obvious to any reasonably competent owner”.

He added: “This is clearly a case of prolonged neglect following a four week period the defendant did not take Lola to a vet.

“It is four weeks of substantial pain that resulted in amputation of a leg from an otherwise healthy dog.

“Had Lola been taken to a vet at the time it would have required relatively straight forward treatment.”

Durkin, a single mum of two, told the RSPCA that the injury happened by Lola falling down some stairs, but that was disputed by the vet.

It was alleged someone else may have kicked her.

Gavin Musgrave said in mitigation for Durkin that she was experiencing personal and financial problems at the time and could not afford veterinary care.

He added it was her first offence and she was very sorry.

In addition to her ban, Durkin was made the subject of a 12-month community order with 20 days rehabilitation activity, must do 40 hours unpaid work and pay £480 court costs.

Lola has now been signed over to the RSPCA and they are confident she will quickly find a new home.